Youth Forward Scholarship 2019 – Being in an accident

Name: Mike Mezquita
From: Tampa, FL
Grade: College Freshman
School: Hillsborough Community College
Votes: 0

of us take driving as a rite of passage as something that everyone
gets to do as they transition into becoming an adult. It’s a sign
of freedom, a milestone that shows we’ve been granted a privilege
that not everyone has until they prove they can get behind the wheel.

had my license for only a few months before I was involved in a car
accident that would forever change how I view driving. It was an
accident that occurred on the highway in the middle of the night
where my father and I crashed into a barrier after losing control of
our car. There was no one else involved in the accident, just us and
a passerby that was kind enough to see if we were ok as the police
came. If we had been hit by another car, I might not be here today
explaining why not only it is crucial to know how to prevent an
accident from occurring but what you should do when one does.

remember being in driving school and learning what were the major
causes of traffic accidents; texting and driving, falling asleep at
the wheel, or driving under the influence all things drivers should
avoid no matter the reason. I remember watching videos of what
happened to drivers when they did not wear a seat belt or how
sticking the front end out of your car at the cross section could
cause an accident but I also remember learning from my teacher that
sometimes accidents just happen whether it be the fault of driver or
some other cause. But the one thing I don’t remember watching a
video of was what you should do when you’re in a major car
accident. Yes, my instructor taught me about exchanging insurance
information, taking pictures of the accident, about calling the
police if someone is injured and how we should make a claim with our
insurance afterward. Knowing all this was still not enough. After
being in the accident I felt shell-shocked and dazed. At that moment
I never felt so unprepared. I didn’t know whether I was supposed to
stay in the car while in the middle of the highway or if I should
stand still and dial 911 for help. I didn’t even realize that my
door was slammed shut by the dent in it.

this experience I learned that I needed a safety plan. The first
thing you need to do is see if your injured and able to move. If you
have passengers checking on them is also a good idea. Calling 911
after a major accident should one of your top priorities as they can
diverge traffic and help anyone stuck or injured. You should also
carry a seatbelt cutter should you be stuck and something capable of
opening a window. Be aware of your surroundings to see if you are in
any immediate danger that requires you to move out your vehicle.
Safety comes first.

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